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Bruce blasts 'horror tackles'

Hull boss Steve Bruce blasted the tackles that went unpunished last weekend against Everton to leave him with a depleted squad for a trip to Tottenham.

Last Updated: 27/10/13 at 15:09 Post Comment

Steve Bruce: Fumed at Gareth Barry tackles and referee response

Steve Bruce: Fumed at Gareth Barry tackles and referee response

Bruce, who already has James Chester, Allan McGregor and Robert Koren in the treatment room ahead of Sunday's game, will also be without forwards Sone Aluko and Danny Graham.

Graham - ruled out for three weeks - and Aluko were on the end of meaty challenges by Gareth Barry last time out and, since he escaped without any booking, Bruce fumed at referee Neil Swarbrick as well as the Everton player.

Bruce, who cannot call on Jake Livermore against his parent club and may also be without Robbie Brady (hernia), was strongly critical of both Barry and Swarbrick's contributions at Goodison Park.

"I know how difficult it is for referees and linesmen and the last thing I want to do is complain about the referees...but the big decisions went against us last week. They were two horrible tackles," Bruce said.

"There should have been a red card. End of story. The challenge on Aluko was reckless, dangerous and could have really injured him.

"In that respect we expect referees to do their jobs, especially in the Premier League.

"These lads are professional now, so to miss something like that concerns me. We could all miss an offside, it happens, but a tackle like that when you're 12 yards away? I was 30 yards away and I was incensed.

"Graham could have been out for three of four months, not weeks, so we have to stamp that out. But the tackle on Aluko, that's the one that really does break people's legs and does them damage for more than a couple of weeks.

"I can't see Graham being available for a few weeks and I don't think Aluko will play. His was a challenge he hasn't really recovered from, but thankfully he's not too badly injured."

Bruce, who knows all about the perks of being with a top side from his years as a player with Manchester United, suggested that Hull may not be getting decisions that the title challengers would expect - but stopped short of accusing officials of anything untoward.

"Let me tell you, if it had been a Manchester United player or a Manchester City player (being tackled) there would have been a different reaction to the one we got," he said.

"We accept that, we're a small club in the Premier League punching above our weight. Is there a bias? I just think the big clubs have bigger support, make bigger noise, challenge the referee for everything. Let's just hope from now we get a fair crack of the whip."

Bruce must take his troops back to White Hart Lane on Tuesday for a Capital One Cup fourth round clash and admits the double-header could not have come at a worse time.

"We couldn't have wished for a more difficult place (to go with injuries). We have arguably got six or seven missing which is too much for us," Bruce added.

"We've got a difficult couple of days coming up, to go there twice, because they are a top side."

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